Understanding yourself and the myriad of skills, experiences, values, beliefs, passions and perspctives is key to this process. And it can be scary.
Many of us have been conditioned to tone down our wins, told not to ‘blow your trumpet’ or ‘toot your own horn’, not to ‘get too big for your boots’.
So this exercise might trigger some stuff – just be gentle with yourself and stay curious as to where these beliefs might have come from. Then gently let it go.
Owning your attributes isn’t arrogant. It’s an important part of building resilience AND the first step in your business journey.
Research shows that people with higher levels of emotional resiliency have a more balanced view of their strenghts and weaknesses than less resilient people.
Arrogant people tend to overestimate their abilities and emotionally puff themselves up to seem bigger than they are. (I’ve a theory that many of them are deeply insecure and overcompensating). Maybe they’ve a fighter’s mentality – zero sum, win at all costs.
Or they genuinely think they’re way cleverer and more cometent than they actually are. It’s called the Dunning Kruger effect.
The opposite of Dunning Kruger is The Imposter Complex – the feeling that we’re out of our depth, not as acomplished or competent as others think we are and we’re going to be found to be a fraud any time soon.
People experiencing the Imposter Complex have high standards and value excellence. In other words, if you didn’t care about things like competence, you wouldn’t be worried you’re not good enough.
So, if you’re worried that you’re over blowing your abilities, the VERY FACT that you’re worrying about it is a sign that’s not what you’re doing! Those with Dunning Kruger simply don’t worry about it – they think they’re great (even when they’re not)!
You can learn more about the Imposter Complex in my interview with Tanya Geisler.
Identifying your strengths, values, passions and purpose is not about crowing or trumpeting your talents at the expense of others – it’s about discovering a deep, solid reserve of inner confidence.
And when you understand yourself, you can articulate this to other people – whether it’s going for a new job, helping out a friend, or explaining to your prospective clients just what you can offer them; the words will feel authentic, real and true.
It also means that you can play to your strengths instead of against them.
You can discover how you work at your best so that you can maximise your outcomes, get more done, in less time and with more energy.
You can stop feeling like a fake or an impostor. You can feel OK with the fact that you don’t know everything, can’t DO everything and that you’re a perfectly imperfect human being.
Because once you really understand yourself, you realise that you don’t need to know the things you can’t do (that be the way of the tree climbing fish) and once you focus on what you CAN do, your true genius reveals itself.